Two years of transformation: On NDA’s second anniversary, Ujjwala heralds smoke free acche din for India’s poor

The Narendra Modi government will complete two years at the Centre this week, on May 26. Three key elements triggered NDA’s spectacular 2014 election victory – taking development and prosperity to the lowest rung of society, eradication of corruption, and ensuring transparency and ease of doing business. While people may have varied opinions on the success of the Modi government on these three parameters, it is amply clear that we are moving decisively and strongly in these areas.
Gone are the days when the central government was besieged by allegations of rampant corruption in almost all spheres – from sale of spectrum to conducting Commonwealth Games and from purchase of helicopters to auction of coal mines. The last two years have seen a sea change as the NDA government has delivered spotless governance without even one serious allegation of corruption.
The Modi government’s accountability towards the common man can be gauged from the fact that be it Indians trapped overseas, a helpless mother looking for a doctor for her ailing child in a train, or a housewife struggling to get a gas cylinder, help is just a tweet away, with no protocol or red tape intervening.
The government has also worked relentlessly to nurse the economy and ushered in a series of reforms to bring GDP growth back on track. Despite a slump in the global economy, those sustained efforts have reignited growth engines and India’s GDP is likely to grow over 7.5% this financial year. The whole country has witnessed the opposition’s continuous attempts to stonewall critical development oriented legislations like GST. Despite such roadblocks, the Modi government has not only strengthened the Indian economy but also re-established India’s supremacy on the global scale.
Programmes like Jan Dhan Yojana, Mudra Yojana, Stand up India, Crop Insurance Scheme, Skill India and Make in India have benefited the common man. Gram Jyoti is rapidly laying infrastructure to electrify every single village in the country, while road construction – which had seen a significant slowdown due to large scale corruption under UPA – is back on track with 18 km of national highways being built every day.
While the opposition alleges that our government has not been able to create new jobs, they conveniently forget that government jobs are not a panacea for unemployment. It is precisely because of this that Prime Minister Narendra Modi introduced schemes like Stand up India, Mudra Yojana, Make in India and Skill India. Thanks to these programmes, millions of skilled and semi-skilled workers and even those engaged in manual labour are getting employment opportunities. Under Stand up India, Dalits and tribals are getting a chance to turn entrepreneurs.
Before the NDA government came into power, the petroleum and natural gas ministry was largely associated with corporates and big ticket commercial interests. However, thanks to Modi’s vision and petroleum minister Dharmendra Pradhan’s tireless efforts, this key ministry has now become a public welfare ministry with programmes like PAHAL, “Give it Up” and Ujjwala Yojana.
A big chunk of the subsidy given by the Centre on cooking fuels always landed in the hands of middlemen. To curb this malpractice the petroleum ministry leveraged Jan Dhan Yojana to launch PAHAL, where subsidies were directly credited to bank accounts.
The scheme has been a roaring success as it put an end to rampant diversion of subsidised LPG for commercial use and embezzlement of funds meant for subsidy. As per latest figures, 15.02 crore LPG consumers have joined the scheme and subsidy of over Rs 32,307 crore has been directly credited to their bank accounts so far, saving the government the sizeable amount of Rs 14,672 crore in the last financial year.
With PAHAL meeting its aim, the PM announced “Give it Up” scheme and personally appealed to the well-heeled in society to voluntarily surrender their LPG subsidy. So far, over 1 crore LPG consumers have given up their LPG subsidy. Such has been the impact of the PM’s appeal that not only the rich but even middle class families have enthusiastically participated in large numbers.
Both PAHAL and “Give it Up” have resulted in substantial savings, which are being utilised to provide cooking gas connections to the poor under Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana. Under this scheme, the government is aiming to give free cooking gas cylinders to 5 crore families living below the poverty line by 2019.
According to the World Health Organization’s 2012 report, 12 lakh Indians died due to smoke emanating from kitchens that use firewood or cow dung to cook food. Ujjwala will not only prove to be a blessing as far as the health of the poor is concerned but will also free women and children from the drudgery of collecting firewood from forests, making them safer.
Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi had his photos taken at Kalawati’s house, perhaps as part of his poverty tourism agenda. But Modi has seen poverty from close quarters and led a life where even basic resources were scarce. Schemes like Ujjwala will go a long way in wiping off tears of a poor woman triggered by everyday kitchen smoke, protect her from diseases and provide a smoke-free and clean environment to her children for their studies. These are real reforms. Perhaps, these are the signs of “acche din” under the Modi government.

Published in Times of India

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  • Sridhar Akula Posted May 24, 2016 1:03 am

    How NDA will act on those 2G ,CWG and Coal block scam culprits?
    What about un employment to youth?
    It looks that in this 2 years of MODI’s govt there is no significant job growth.

    • Anupam Singh Posted May 24, 2016 11:36 am


  • Sprahladrao Guttikar Posted May 24, 2016 7:08 pm

    1.What ever have been done for poor is commendable by NDA.
    2.Prices of pulses is touching sky & other edibles.This need to be brought to 2000 level. If NDA can do this then rest assured you will be in the power for another TWO terms(2019 & 2024).
    Jai Bharat.

  • Unfulfilled Promises Posted September 6, 2018 3:03 pm

    Thanks for sharing the information with us, keep posing.

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